Home » Foundation celebrates 25 years of enhancing lives of Texas Children’s cancer patients
June 2, 2008 – Texas Children’s Hospital
Face painting, tattoos, crafts, games and a magician kept children and their families entertained at Texas Children’s Cancer Center while they celebrated the 25th anniversary of The Periwinkle Foundation, a Houston-based non-profit organization that organizes camps and activities for Texas Children’s patients who have cancer.
The Periwinkle Foundation has provided services to children and families facing cancer since 1983. That first year, volunteers, physicians and Texas Children’s Cancer Center staff founded Camp Periwinkle, a one-week camp for cancer patients ages 7 to 15 and their siblings – long before the concept of patient- and family-centered care was a trend.
In addition to Camp Periwinkle, The Periwinkle Foundation hosts twice-yearly Camp YOLO (You Only Live Once), a camp for teens and their siblings; Making a Mark®, an annual art exhibit of creative writing and visual arts by patients and siblings at Texas Children’s Cancer Center; and Celebration of Life, a yearly gathering of Cancer Center patients including many campers and families.
“The Periwinkle Foundation has a recognized presence at Texas Children’s Hospital,” said Dr. ZoAnn Dreyer. “Children who have attended one of the camp programs have a renewed sense of independence and hope. For those unable to attend camp, programs such as Making a Mark® bring activities directly to the patients in the clinic. From creative writing to arts-and-crafts programs, the children are given opportunities to express their fears and feelings in new, expressive ways.”
The Periwinkle Foundation’s name comes from the perennial Vinca Minor, the periwinkle plant. The periwinkle is the source of one of the most commonly prescribed and critically important chemotherapy agents used – vincristine.
The Periwinkle Foundation develops and provides programs that positively change the lives of children, young adults and families who are challenged by cancer and other life threatening illnesses and are cared for at Texas Children’s Hospital.
Each year more than 4,000 children are touched by Periwinkle programs Camp Periwinkle, Camp YOLO, Family Camp, the Long Term Survivor Program and the Arts & Creative Writing Program which culminates each year in a traveling exhibition of art by children touched by cancer and blood disorders. Through camping, recreational and arts programming, The Periwinkle Foundation provides opportunities for these special children and their families to heal emotionally, lead fuller lives and become stronger survivors. With the generous help of our friends and supporters in the community, The Periwinkle Foundation changes lives for life. Learn more at www.periwinklefoundation.org.